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Discussions about the fashion industry thread

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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This stuff definitely affects people's perception of luxury. In a market where people are constantly questioning high prices, superfluous packaging can give you the impression that you've spent your money on something special. Jacques Marie Mage sunglasses cost anywhere from $600 to $1,500. Often, it's just acetate -- a type of plastic -- but the specialized cards, boxes, packaging, etc make the experience feel special.

Same with fountain pens. You're basically buying a plastic item, often with a stock/ pre-manufactured/ non-exclusive nib. So the company ups the experience with packaging.

This feels like the convo about country of origin. People will say they don't care where something is made as long as it's made well, but if a luxury item comes with a "made in China label" a small minority of people will start to complain.
 

cb200

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While not luxury Patagonia did a bit of a study on trying to cut down on poly bags an minimize packaging in their supply chain. At the time they ran into issues using alternate methods of storage and shipping with damaged goods by the time things got through their DC (distribution centre) and delivered. Being Patagonia they measured the total eco impact of that damaged goods vs the use of Poly bags and, I think, stuck with the poly bags until something better came along. Not sure if they've found a solution.
 

mak1277

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This stuff definitely affects people's perception of luxury. In a market where people are constantly questioning high prices, superfluous packaging can give you the impression that you've spent your money on something special. Jacques Marie Mage sunglasses cost anywhere from $600 to $1,500. Often, it's just acetate -- a type of plastic -- but the specialized cards, boxes, packaging, etc make the experience feel special.

Same with fountain pens. You're basically buying a plastic item, often with a stock/ pre-manufactured/ non-exclusive nib. So the company ups the experience with packaging.

This feels like the convo about country of origin. People will say they don't care where something is made as long as it's made well, but if a luxury item comes with a "made in China label" a small minority of people will start to complain.
This is a backwards way of thinking about it though, don't you think?

Using the watch box example...I'd much rather pay $100-200 less and have my watch arrive in a tiny plastic coffin as opposed to the shiny, over-the-top box. I am not dumb enough to think those extra things in the box are free...I'm paying for them somehow.

If a brand needs to brainwash consumers by making packaging amazing just to justify price, to me that's a signal of a product that isn't worth what I'm paying for it. The only "experience" I care about is the experience of wearing/using what I buy. That said, I think "unboxing" videos are an utterly ridiculous concept, so clearly I could be totally out of touch with current consumer culture and rightly accused of just yelling at kids to get off my lawn.
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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This is a backwards way of thinking about it though, don't you think?

Using the watch box example...I'd much rather pay $100-200 less and have my watch arrive in a tiny plastic coffin as opposed to the shiny, over-the-top box. I am not dumb enough to think those extra things in the box are free...I'm paying for them somehow.

If a brand needs to brainwash consumers by making packaging amazing just to justify price, to me that's a signal of a product that isn't worth what I'm paying for it. The only "experience" I care about is the experience of wearing/using what I buy. That said, I think "unboxing" videos are an utterly ridiculous concept, so clearly I could be totally out of touch with current consumer culture and rightly accused of just yelling at kids to get off my lawn.
I don't think people are consuming just objects. They are buying things for their symbolic meaning or associated meanings -- ideas about luxury, quality, authenticity, and even personal identity. Attempts to boil down this market to just objects, delivering on pure value, often result in boring, mediocre DTC brands.

I agree that the packaging is superfluous, and I would rather do without the stuff. But I also recognize that a lot of what we're purchasing is about meaning and not about objects, and packaging plays a small role in this perception.
 

Texasmade

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Yea but a lot buyer cares what can you do?
I know that's the problem. Because I know watches are supposed to have the box, I wouldn't pay the same price for a watch without the box. I have several Omega boxes and a Cartier box that I wish I could just give back to Omega and Cartier. The only watch box I want to keep is the one for my APRO.
 

Fuuma

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This is a backwards way of thinking about it though, don't you think?

Using the watch box example...I'd much rather pay $100-200 less and have my watch arrive in a tiny plastic coffin as opposed to the shiny, over-the-top box. I am not dumb enough to think those extra things in the box are free...I'm paying for them somehow.

If a brand needs to brainwash consumers by making packaging amazing just to justify price, to me that's a signal of a product that isn't worth what I'm paying for it. The only "experience" I care about is the experience of wearing/using what I buy. That said, I think "unboxing" videos are an utterly ridiculous concept, so clearly I could be totally out of touch with current consumer culture and rightly accused of just yelling at kids to get off my lawn.
Area man discovers commodity fetishism on a fashion clothing forum.
 

gdl203

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I don't think people are consuming just objects. They are buying things for their symbolic meaning or associated meanings -- ideas about luxury, quality, authenticity, and even personal identity. Attempts to boil down this market to just objects, delivering on pure value, often result in boring, mediocre DTC brands.

I agree that the packaging is superfluous, and I would rather do without the stuff. But I also recognize that a lot of what we're purchasing is about meaning and not about objects, and packaging plays a small role in this perception.
couple more points:

(1) do we feel the same way with IRL shopping? would we be satisfied going to a nice store, spend $400 on a sweater and have the clerk hand you a polybagged unit and a receipt? Rational or not, I feel like it detracts from the shopping experience and would leave a mixed impression of the shop/brand on me. I don’t see online shopping as that different - it leaves a weird taste when I spent $1k on a jacket and it arrives in a polybag with a couple barcode stickers. (I’m old and willing to admit that millennials may think differently)

(2) a lot of people buy things for others. If you went to get something nice for your SO, would you prefer a nice pouch or tissue paper? When you get flowers for her, don’t you appreciate the careful wrapping of the bouquet rather than just leave with the flowers? As a retailer, we don’t always know if something is bought to give or not…
 

mak1277

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I know that's the problem. Because I know watches are supposed to have the box, I wouldn't pay the same price for a watch without the box. I have several Omega boxes and a Cartier box that I wish I could just give back to Omega and Cartier. The only watch box I want to keep is the one for my APRO.
I have sold an Omega box (not the watch, just the box) through watchuseek before.
 

mak1277

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couple more points:

(1) do we feel the same way with IRL shopping? would we be satisfied going to a nice store, spend $400 on a sweater and have the clerk hand you a polybagged unit and a receipt? Rational or not, I feel like it detracts from the shopping experience and would leave a mixed impression of the shop/brand on me. I don’t see online shopping as that different - it leaves a weird taste when I spent $1k on a jacket and it arrives in a polybag with a couple barcode stickers. (I’m old and willing to admit that millennials may think differently)

(2) a lot of people buy things for others. If you went to get something nice for your SO, would you prefer a nice pouch or tissue paper? When you get flowers for her, don’t you appreciate the careful wrapping of the bouquet rather than just leave with the flowers? As a retailer, we don’t always know if something is bought to give or not…
Re: #1, my feelings are the same way. I generally wouldn't care one bit about the packaging I get when I leave a store.

Also, if I buy a $1k jacket from a physical store, I'm wearing it home 100% of the time.
 

smittycl

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There is some psychology involved of course. I ordered one MTM suit from Kent Wang years ago and it arrived squished into a Priority Mail box. I'm not sure which was worse though, the fact that my suit arrived in the same of box used books show up in or that it was folded basically to bouillon cube size.

I prefer some sort of professionalism but it doesn't have to be over the top.
 
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Fuuma

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Other than a watch box or an eyeglasses case or a decent quality garment bag, does anyone remember the packaging one or two months later?
Watches have such gaudy packaging that they just ended burned into my mind. Hermès is super branded and instantly recognizable by now so there's a few. In the end all this extra packaging is fucking unethical on a burning planet.
 

sushijerk

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Other than a watch box or an eyeglasses case or a decent quality garment bag, does anyone remember the packaging one or two months later?
I think good packaging works well the first time but is diminishing return afterwards. I remember my first order from Mr.porter and the packaging and faux hand written note was really a step above others at the time. But enough packages later and it just feels wasteful. I'm sure a good amount of ppl will complain about them cutting corners and "the good old days" if they cut back though. A minimal packaging option for those who request it seems best.

I'd rather minimal packaging than bad though. Mykita and moscot really give crap boxes for your eyeglasses. Clunky, feels cheap, and the fake suede covering from moscot started shedding off all over the place. The ones warby Parker gives with their $65 glasses are better and that's what I travel with.
 

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